P.P. Vaidyanathan Elected to Indian National Academy of Engineering
The Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE) has elected Professor P.P. Vaidyanathan, Kiyo and Eiko Tomiyasu Professor of Electrical Engineering, a Foreign Fellow. The Academy honors Indian and Foreign nationals who are elected by peer committees in recognition of their personal achievements in engineering which are of exceptional merit and demonstrated distinctive eminence in the new and developing fields of technology. There are only five Foreign Fellows elected each year. [Learn more]
P. P. Vaidyanathan
Recording Brain Activity with Laser Light
Lihong Wang, Bren Professor of Medical Engineering and Electrical Engineering, has demonstrated for the first time a new technology for imaging the human brain using laser light and ultrasonic sound waves. The technology, known as photoacoustic computerized tomography, or PACT, has been developed as a method for imaging tissues and organs. Now, Wang has made further improvements to the technology that make it so precise and sensitive that it can detect even minute changes in the amount of blood traveling through very tiny blood vessels as well as the oxygenation level of that blood. [Caltech story]
Hrishika Basava Receives 2021 Henry Ford II Scholar Award
Hrishika Basava, advised by Ali Hajimiri, Bren Professor of Electrical Engineering and Medical Engineering; Co-Director, Space-Based Solar Power Project, is one of four recipients of the 2021 Henry Ford II Scholar Award. Hrishika is interested in many different aspects of electrical engineering, and specifically applications in robotics and aerospace. She does research in inverse design techniques for nanophotonics with Ali Hajimiri. Hrishika has also worked on the Caltech Racing electrical team and has done research on the explosion mechanism of supernovae at the Carnegie Observatories. At Caltech, she has particularly enjoyed taking hands-on project classes, as well as being a teaching assistant in electrical engineering courses. This summer, Hrishika will be interning at Nuro, a robotics company working on a self-driving car. After graduating she plans to pursue higher education and eventually work in the technology industry. The Henry Ford II Scholar Award is funded under an endowment provided by the Ford Motor Company Fund. The award is made annually to engineering students with the best academic record at the end of the third year of undergraduate study.
Henry Ford II Scholar Award
EAS New Horizons Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Award
The Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences seeks nominations to recognize and honor individuals within the EAS community who have actively contributed to EAS’s goal to be a diverse, equitable, and inclusive engineering community. The award is available to members of the EAS community, including current students, postdoctoral scholars, staff, and faculty. Nominations are due Wednesday, May 19, 2021 and are accepted from anyone in the EAS community, EAS alumni and members of the Caltech community. Click here for full description of how to make a nomination.
JPL Designates Perseverance Rover’s Landing Site and Observation Point
The Jet Propulsion Laboratory has designated the Perseverance rover’s landing site as the Octavia E. Butler Landing and the rover’s observation point to record Ingenuity helicopter tests as the Van Zyl Overlook. Jakob van Zyl (MS ’83; PhD ‘86) joined JPL in 1986 and stayed for 33 years in various positions, including director for Astronomy, Physics and Space Technology. He taught at Caltech, as a senior faculty associate in electrical engineering and aerospace, for two decades. The Ingenuity helicopter was one of his last projects at the JPL. Van Zyl retired from the JPL in 2019 and passed away unexpectedly in August 2020. Octavia Butler lived just miles away from JPL; she was a pioneering author and one of the first Black female science fiction authors. Butler was the first to write about prominent Black characters in science fiction settings, using dystopias, time travel and other tropes. She was awarded both the Hugo and Nebula awards. In 1995, she became the first science fiction author to receive a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. Butler passed away in 2006. [USA Today]
Jakob van Zyl